The Indian captain credited his New Zealand counterpart Kane Williamson for keeping the pressure lid on throughout the rain-affected Test before also attributing the loss to 'momentum breaking' delays and halts.
The match was evenly balanced before the start of play on Wednesday - the reserve day to make up for two washouts on Day 1 and 4.
However, New Zealand's formidable tactics caught the Indian batsmen off-guard, and they could only put up a final-innings target of 139 runs in 53 remaining overs.
This was chased by New Zealand with eight wickets and seven overs to spare. The Black Caps became the inaugural Test champions, and Williamson pocketed his country's first ICC trophy in 21 years.
Virat Kohli said in the post-match presentation:
"First up, a big congratulations to Kane and his team. I think they've shown great consistency and heart over whatever time we've had on the field to pull off a result in three days basically. Credit to them for sticking to their processes long enough, they put us under pressure throughout the course of the game and they thoroughly deserve to win."
Virat Kohli rued the rain-halts, saying India might have scored more without them. He, however, also added that New Zealand's disciplined charge pushed India into the corner, and they eventually fell 30-40 runs short of a competitive total.
"Yeah, the first day got washed out and when the play resumed it was difficult to get any sort of momentum on that day (Day 2). We had lost only three wickets, probably would have got a few more runs if the play would have gone for a bit longer. And then we did really well with the ball in the first innings to pull things back nicely. But, I think, this morning was the difference where the Kiwi bowlers executed their plans to perfection and didn't allow us to get any scoring opportunities regularly which really started pushing us back into the game. In the end, we were 30-40 short of putting them under serious pressure in the last innings."
"Test format is the heartbeat of international cricket" - Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli, being a staunch advocate of Test cricket as the purest and most integral form of cricket, further called the WTC a step in the right direction to keep cricket's 'heartbeat' competitive and alive.
"It's great for the game (WTC) and the more Test format is given importance, the more it will keep international cricket alive. Test format is the heartbeat of international cricket. I think this format will definitely help Test cricket be exciting, no Test match is going to be boring. Every team is going to go for the result as you saw in this game as well. I think, it's a great move by ICC and it's going to get more and more exciting from here on."